A pilot project is being rolled out in Hastings County to make sure ambulances aren’t double-dispatched.
The Ministry of Health approved the project earlier this week. Hastings-Quinte Paramedic Services Chief Doug Socha says it will create a map so dispatch centres know where all ambulances are in Hastings, Peterborough, and Northumberland counties.
Right now, ambulances in Hastings County are dispatched out of Kingston. Those in Peterborough and Northumberland counties are dispatched out of Lindsay. Neither dispatch centre can see where the neighbouring county’s ambulances are. Socha says that means two groups of ambulances can be sent to the same call, and that neither can turn around until the dispatch centres figure out which of the two is closer.
Socha says the same problem exists in North Hastings, which sits on the border of the Renfrew County dispatch centre.
But, Socha says, if you know which ambulances are available in both areas, you will only need to send one out.
The Eastern Ontario Regional Network is paying for the project, which is expected to cost less than $8,000.
Socha says it shouldn’t take too long to roll out because most of the technology needed for it is already in place. If it’s successful in Hastings County, it could be introduced across Ontario.